• Cosi Fan Tutti

  • An Aurelio Zen Mystery, Book 5
  • By: Michael Dibdin
  • Narrated by: Michael Kitchen
  • Length: 8 hrs and 9 mins
  • 4.1 out of 5 stars (143 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Neopolitan businessmen, politicians, and eminent mafiosi are assassinated as someone takes literally the job of cleaning up the city's tarnished image. In this mystery, Aurelio Zen discovers that in '90s 'New Italy', things are still the same.

©1996 Michael Dibdin (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

What listeners say about Cosi Fan Tutti

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Wonderfully entertaining

Complex plot and delicious writing serving up great characters in hilarity and drama. Michael Kitchen's narration is the superb.

5 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Entertaining story, excellently read!

What made the experience of listening to Cosi Fan Tutti the most enjoyable?

Michael Kitchen is a wonderful reader, he pronounces the Italian words sprinkled through the story beautifully. He has just the right balance of lightness and irony for the character of Aurelio Zen, the disillusioned Italian detective. This story is playing off the opera Cosi Fan Tutte, with the characters of the story having similar experiences to those in the opera.

What other book might you compare Cosi Fan Tutti to and why?

I am a big Michael Dibdin/Aurelio Zen fan, and this book has a decidedly different, more playful style than the other books. That is not to say it is not as good, it doesn't have the more serious tone that the other stories do. It is a nice change for Zen.

What does Michael Kitchen bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Michael Kitchen has a wonderful voice, pronounces the Italian words expertly, and has just the right tone of irony that is required for the Aurelio Zen series.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

This book was very entertaining and funny, I highly recommend it to fans of Aurelio Zen and those who enjoy lighthearted detective stories.

Any additional comments?

I give it 5 stars all around!

4 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Enjoyable, fun, intriguing

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes, I would recommend this to anyone who likes a good story told by a great voice artist like Michael Kitchen.

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

The plot is down right fun.

What about Michael Kitchen’s performance did you like?

Mr Kitchen is as good as ever. Besides I love his Folye's War series. He is certainly a great actor. Forget someone like Tom Cruse reading this. Kitchen is the consummate leading character actor at the top of his game. He appears to be having great fun with the various voices. I envy such talent.

Any additional comments?

One can really appreciate this story when you find a quiet place, a cup of hot chocolate, and no interruptions. It is not hard to "get into" this story. I will wait a month or two and hear it again.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

A mystery that isn't

This was entertaining and sometimes funny. It was very well read. Very interesting descriptions. It is a mystery but also many other plots. The jumping around was sometimes confusing. Recommend for the investigative inclined.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Very good!

This was the most entertaining of all of the Michael Dibdin audiobooks. Michael Kitchen was fantastic reading it.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

My favorite Zen to date

Great characters, and great reading by Kitchen, whose entertaining and distinguishing accents make listening easy. Zen's taxi-driver reminded me of the inn-keeper in Shaw's A Man of Destiny (comedic play about the young Napoleon). The plot is good enough, but who needs a great plot with scenes and dialogue like this. Don't listen near the "Quiet Please" sign, or be prepared to suppress chuckles!

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Much To Do About Nothing

One of those stories where one chases their tail only to end up having it all work out in the end with a few laughs to tie it all up. Not Michael Dibdin's best, but still nice to see that Aurelio Zen hasn't been affected by fame and success, actually this character always just misses out, but he still ends up surviving and not looking too bad. Michael Kitchen is his usually best.
ZEN LITE.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

love Michael kitchen

What made the experience of listening to Cosi Fan Tutti the most enjoyable?

The narrator is the best. He makes the Italian voices different and fun. He has just the right touch for this fairly humorous Zen episode. His narration is a bit slow, but his delivery helps you enjoy all the nuances of the authors prose, especially the dialog.

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

The plot was a tad confusing with lots of digressions, but that seemed intentional in this parody of Mozart's opera. This is not a book for someone who wants a straight detective mystery.

Have you listened to any of Michael Kitchen’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

I've listened to one other Michael Kitchen performance. He is just superlative always.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Zen

What's not to like about Zen? He loves his mother, treats women with respect and catches the bad guys. Michael Dibdin I miss your kind of writting.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

NOTHING LIKE ZEN ON THE TELE

We were introduced to this author though the BBC, and that Zen is such an unusual character, not typical, moral in his own way, sincere, with a backbone, and very clever. THIS IS NOT THAT ZEN. It is much more police-corrupt-lazy cop, and so it is a huge disappointment. I forced myself through 1 1/2 hours, then let go and went on. Possibly I will give it another try when I am not thinking it is like the BBC series, WHICH IS EXCELLENT, but I doubt it.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Alan
  • 05-04-11

Cosi Fan Tuti

After the too short 3 episode Zenn series on BBC, I thought I'd try an audio version of the one of the books, I was not disappointed. I found it's witty, tongue in cheek humour, and light touch most entertaining. Couldn't stop listening, until I'd finished it, and have immediately bought another Zenn audio book. The narrator Michael Kitchen is perfect for the style of prose, and 'acts' the narrative superbly, adding to my total enjoyment. Highly recommended.

4 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Sandra
  • 01-09-14

Dibdin and Zen - unpredictable and compelling.


It takes concentration to follow and understand the machinations of the minds of his characters, not least of all, Zen himself, but once grasped, following them is a breathless journey - they never disappoint!!

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Clever Clogs
  • 04-17-11

The Art of Zen...

An intriguing plot, presented with a deftness of touch rarely encountered in such novels.
This author understands the dark heart of Italy.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mr. C. Q. Lawrence
  • 11-02-19

So clever!

This shows Dibdin's mastery at its fullest extent. It is quite unlike anything else in the Zen canon and needs to be considered as such.The conflation of the Mozart/Da Ponte Cosi Fan Tutte in present day Naples is managed to perfection. The gender switching of the pairs of lovers - the Albanians being the "girls" rather than the boys, the assumed identity of Zen as Alfonso Zembla (Don Alfonso), the Despino/a character, Dottore Esposito bringing in the "mesmeric dimension. There is also a nod to the Marriage of Figaro in the final parenting reveal as with Marcellino and Bartolo in the opera. This a pure Mozartian riff and Dibdin weaves it all into a fabric that works, albeit improbably. The dream like qualities of Naples - quite unlike anywhere else in Italy - create a context where all of this can happen. Taken on its own I can understand the disappointment and sense of surprise from some reviewers with this novel but, in the right context, it is clearly a triumph. For those readers who do not yet know the Mozart opera a great, wonderful treat in store including a tune some might remember from Shawshank Redemption.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Andy
  • 06-11-16

Good book, not a traditional murder mystery

Good book, not a traditional murder mystery but worth listening to, a lot of character development happens in this book so worth listening to if you are interested in the whole series of books

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Ms I Treloar
  • 07-17-11

Made me smile!

This book is worth listening to for the excellent way Michael Kitchen reads it. He puts so much humour into it with his expression and Italian accent. The story has many twists and turns and great characters. It was hard to switch off.

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Avi D Reader
  • 05-10-22

Murder buffa

Laugh out loud funny, a diversion from the normal sardonic humour of Zen- but brilliantly written and brilliantly read. Bravo!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Jeremy Nicholson
  • 08-15-21

Almost, but not quite

Having got used to a certain experience in the first four Zen tales, this seems a little short of the mark. Everything is there, but the operatic quality Dibden was aiming for lacks substance. Still a great story and performed with the degree of excellence I have come to expect, but ultimately not as satisfying as the earlier works

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Rolando
  • 05-04-20

One of my favourite Audiobooks

I love the storyline which is an ideal vehicle for Zen and his adventures.
It’s very very funny.
Michael Kitchen’s narration is the best I’ve ever heard. He is perfect for Zen and the crazy crisscrosses of Italy.
A loveable exposition of Italian life and the characters who inhabit it.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • James Brown
  • 04-29-20

Excellent.

Another great instalment of Aurillio's Zen's chaotic police and private life. Excellently brought to life by Michael Kitchen's narration.